Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance that provides financial and medical benefits to employees who suffer from work-related injuries and illnesses. The goal of the program is to ensure that all Iowa workers are provided with the financial and medical resources necessary to return to work.
In Iowa, employers are required to obtain workers’ compensation insurance from a private insurance company or provide proof of financial responsibility to the state. The insurance company administers the claim and pays benefits to injured workers including payment for medical care. If an employee is injured on the job, the injured worker must file a claim with the employer to receive benefits. Employees may file a claim by notifying their employer within 90 days of the date of the work injury.
In order to qualify for workers’ compensation benefits, an employee must be able to show that their injury or illness was caused by their work activities. If an employee is unable to work due to their injury or illness, they may be eligible for temporary total disability benefits. These benefits are calculated based on a percentage of the employee’s average weekly wage and number of eligible dependents. Temporary total disability benefits are intended to replace a portion of their lost wages.
In addition to temporary total disability benefits, an injured worker is entitled to medical benefits. These benefits cover the costs of medical treatment, such as doctor’s visits, hospital stays, surgery, prescription medications, and physical therapy. The employee may also be eligible for vocational rehabilitation benefits if they cannot return to their former job and need to be retrained.
When an employee is injured and unable to work, they may also be entitled to permanent disability benefits. These benefits are based on the degree of permanent disability suffered and are intended to replace a portion of the lost wages. In some cases, an injured worker may also be eligible for death benefits if their injury or illness leads to their death. The amount of the death benefit is based on 80% of the employee’s weekly spendable earnings commencing from the date of death. Benefits are payable to the surviving spouse for life or until remarriage. Benefits are paid to any dependent children of the deceased until the age of 18, or 25 if still a dependent and enrolled as a full-time student in an accredited institution. There are other considerations for parents and partially dependent children.
Workers’ compensation is an important safety net for Iowa workers. It provides employees with both financial and medical resources when they suffer from work-related injuries or illnesses. It is important for Iowa employees to understand their rights and responsibilities in the event of a workplace injury and seek legal counsel if necessary.
Speak to a Workers’ Compensation Attorney
Mark Chipokas and his trusted staff, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, have more than 25 years of experience in representing Iowa workers who have suffered cumulative injuries. Mark delivers professional and personalized guidance to help you understand the laws and to maximize your benefits as much as possible. Schedule a free online consultation or call 319-366-7888 today